Srebia and Kosovo reach breakthrough on cooperation

July 2, 2011 23:54


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BRUSSELS - Serbia and Kosovo agreed on Saturday to cooperate on several practical issues, taking their first step towards easing troubled relations and advancing towards European Union membership.

The EU-mediated talks target a tangle of problems crucial to Kosovo's daily existence, which are a legacy of Serbia's refusal to recognize its secession in 2008, but sidestep the question of Kosovo's independence.

Under Saturday's deal, the two sides will recognize national identification cards and education diplomas issues by each state, making travel easier and allowing for better access to jobs, particularly for Kosovars seeking employment in Serbia.

Belgrade has also agreed to share copies of Kosovo's civil registry, crucial for the smooth operation of the judiciary and combating organized crime which is rife in the region.

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